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Rumor: Windows 8 To Hit RC in June, Lack 'Start' Button

More expected dates for Windows 8's release cycle were leaked on Friday by financial news Web site Dividend.com.

The site quoted an unnamed Nomura Securities financial analyst as saying that Microsoft plans to roll out the Windows 8 release candidate version by June. The release-to-manufacturing version will appear in late July or August. General availability of Windows 8 will be in September or October,according to the un-bylined news account.

Supposedly, the financial analyst had been told that information after having met with Tami Reller, chief financial officer and chief marketing officer of Microsoft's Windows and Windows Live Division. However, since the analyst isn't named, it seems to be at the rumorstage.

Those dates correspond with an earlier rumor about Windows 8's productionschedule, which hasn't been publicized by the company. Microsoftreleased the "consumer preview" beta of Windows 8 in lateFebruary.

A Microsoft spokesperson said the company had no comment on Windows8's timing. The spokesperson said that Reller was at a Nomura event,"but the comments about timing were speculation by Nomura'sanalyst."

Reller purportedly told Nomura Securities analysts that Windows 8won't have a start button. She is also alleged to have said thatMicrosoft will provide a tutorial to help users navigate Windows 8 usingthe traditional mouse and keyboard combination.

It's not surprising that the start button is missing from Windows 8as Microsoft has previously explained that it foundpeople weren't starting their apps from there. Instead, apps in Windows8 are represented by tiles, which are all located on the start screendesktop. That design is supposed to optimize the operating system fortouch-screens and allow quick user access to apps.

Microsoft's spokesperson confirmed the death of the start button inWindows 8.

"Like we said at Consumer Preview, the traditional start buttonhas been replaced with a new Windows 8 Start Screen."

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About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.

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